Your Favorite Question

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Your Favorite Question

Post by magin » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:21 pm

I think it would be interesting for writers to get a sense of the questions that quizbowl players enjoyed the most and why. So, what is your favorite question that you didn't write? I'm hoping that people don't just respond with questions that they got good buzzes on, but ones that were executed so well that they made the whole day brighter.

Personally, my favorite question was this submission from Georgia Tech for ACF Nationals 2013:
Carol Kramer claimed that this invention was a major reason for the decline of matriarchal societies because it was almost exclusively used by men. Jerolyn Morisson and Douglas Park analyzed the success of this invention by studying notches in the walls on Crete. Techniques called jiggering and jollying were frequently employed by people using this invention. Unlike the Yangshao culture of the Yellow River valley, the later Longshan culture employed this invention, which it used to create “black” items. In the Western Hemisphere, a technique involving beating large coils was used instead of this invention. Early examples of this invention included the tournette, which was gradually replaced by the “kick” or “fast” type of it. A triangular support was placed under one of these devices, which functioned by rotating a large stone. For 10 points, name these devices that were used to “throw” clay in order to form ceramics.
ANSWER: pottery wheel [or potter’s wheel]
Why it made my day: I like that this question included some clues at the beginning to reward people with field knowledge, then moved on to clues accessible to laymen. It also features plenty of Lewis Mumford-style middle clues about the history of technology and tools, which I think quizbowl often elides in favor of questions about abstract ideas. It's also not fraudable from playing past packets, while being incredibly accessible by the end. It rewards many different types of knowledge--you could answer this from learning about anthropology, archaeology, the history of technology, the history of early civilizations, etc, instead of requiring knowledge of one incredibly focused topic.

Not only that, it's written in clear, readable English without meandering clauses. The sentences have a natural rhythm, and while not being too abrupt, stop at the end of every major idea instead of continuing and straining the breath of moderators.

Social science, especially anthropology, can be very difficult to write; for some packet-submission tournaments I edited, no teams submitted any anthropology or archaeology questions. Not only was this a usable question, saving me the time of writing a replacement tossup, but it was on a really interesting and accessible topic. It absolutely saved me a ton of labor and energy, and put a smile on my face and a song in my heart.

To this day, it's my favorite question.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Cheynem » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:32 pm

One nominee:
This building, which is once described as a “huge incoherent failure”, was constructed by a brewer who unsuccessfully tried to force his neighbors to thatch their roofs. One resident of this building is seen doing “liver exercises” on the floor and reluctantly agrees to play “The Love Nest” on the piano. It also contains a study decorated in the Adam style, which is used by a man who is compared to a “regular Belasco!” Five crates of oranges and lemons arrive at this building every (*) Friday, as ordered by its owner, who pulls out piles of unused silk shirts while giving a tour. This building’s library contains books with uncut pages that are examined by a man with large glasses, while its residents include Ewing Klipspringer. Its swimming pool is the scene of a grisly murder committed by George Wilson. For 10 points, name this building which is the setting of uproarious parties attended by Jordan Baker and Nick Carraway, the home of the protagonist of an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel.
ANSWER: Jay Gatsby’s house [accept equivalents, like James Gatz’s house]
I think this is by Evan Adams or Matt Weiner for Minnesota Open 2010. It's so great and shows how you can do a brilliant hard question on a very easy topic.

Trying to find other ones.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by The Abydos Helicopter » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:34 pm

"Question: This historian's labelling of a people as "shepherd-kings" was referenced in a debate over the origins of the Jews found in another writer's tract Against Apion. The accounts created by this historian, which are largely corroborated by the Turin Canon, include a description of the wicked tyrant Ochthois being devoured by an animal in Heracleopolis. A chronology created by this historian is interrupted after the Saite Renaissance by a line that includes Bardiya, who hailed from (*)) Persia. This writer's works were the main source used by Flinders Petrie to date his findings, and were the most important such source until the discoveries of Jean François Champollion. His history begins with Menes and proceeds through thirty-one dynasties, the last native one ending with Nectanebo II. For 10 points, name this author of the Aegyptiaca, a priest who chronicled the pharaohs."
Answer: Manetho
From WAO - mixture of clues from the text, its relationship to other texts, and its use in modern history and archaeology. What's not to love?
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Cheynem » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:44 pm

So College History Bowl didn't have the greatest track record in terms of being finished, but when it was actually finished it presented some gems, like:
Herb Bridges's book about this event includes a photo of the slogan "Never in a lifetime have eyes beheld its equal" at the building where it occurred. For this event, Governor E.D. Rivers instituted three days of holiday and asked the entire state to dress in period costume. It was dubbed "the biggest event to happen in the South in my lifetime" by Jimmy Carter. A Junior Chamber of Commerce ball organized as part of this event featured a ten-year-old Martin Luther King, Jr. singing in the boys' choir. The guests of honor at this event toured the (*) Cyclorama before proceeding down Peachtree Street to the Loew's Grand. Hattie McDaniel and Butterfly McQueen were
notably excluded from this strictly segregated event. For 10 points, identify this December 1939 extravaganza in Atlanta at which the first publicized showing of a movie based on a Margaret Mitchell novel occurred.
ANSWER: the premiere of Gone With the Wind
This condition was attacked by Eugene Talmadge in a comment about "knowing what it is to work in the sun fourteen hours a day." James Tobin's The Man He Became is a history of this condition, which may have been acquired at Bear Mountain while visiting a Boy Scout troop. Compensation for this condition allowed a man to successfully land a 237-pound shark after two hours on a fishing line. Louis Howe was primarily responsible for managing this condition, which was the reason a bathtub was installed on the USS Iowa. This condition was originally misdiagnosed as a spinal blood clot by a Dr. Keen, after it caused a man to fall into the Bay of (*) Fundy, before it was correctly identified by Robert Lovett. A book about the "splendid deception" of this condition's sufferer, by Hugh Gallagher, says that the Secret Service routinely destroyed film showing the man affected getting in and out of his car. This condition inspired Basil O'Connor to found the March of Dimes, one of many pieces of evidence that it was generally known to the public, despite the myth that it was kept secret. For 10 points, identify this condition which caused a four-term President to wear steel leg braces.
ANSWER: Franklin Roosevelt's polio [or FDR in place of "Franklin Roosevelt"; prompt on Roosevelt; or
inability to walk or wheelchair use or disability or other things like that in place of polio]
An author claimed that the first American example of this item was a lead-and-mahogany contraption set up by Adam Thompson in Cincinnati in 1842 and shown off at a Christmas party. These items were claimed to be generally accepted as healthy only after Millard Fillmore installed one in the White House in 1850, and subject to a thirty dollar annual tax in Virginia and a prohibition for nonmedical uses in Boston. These items were the subject of the 1917 Boston Evening Mail article "A Neglected Anniversary," which debuted all of the aforementioned completely untrue nonfacts and has been widely cited by the credulous since despite being a hoax about the history of these things by (*) H.L. Mencken. Longtime usher Ike Hoover's book 42 Years in the White House is the origin of another myth about these objects, which claims that butter was used to extract William Howard Taft from one in which he had become stuck. For 10 points, identify these common focal points of historical embellishments, another one of which was housing Jean-Paul Marat when he was assassinated.
ANSWER: bathtubs
After spending the day before getting my ass kicked at ICT by fiends like Shan Kothari and Jarret Greene, it was one of the greatest experiences of my life to hear these questions.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by women, fire and dangerous things » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:46 pm

The tossup from last year's ACF Nationals on the word "nothing" in Shakespeare was a thing of beauty. It made me realize, in the midst of hearing the question, that interesting connections could be drawn between the various uses of the word in Shakespeare's works, and it did so with an extremely accessible answerline and clues that lots of people were likely to know.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by csheep » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:48 pm

I like "hard toss-ups on easy things" in general.

ACF Nats 2011:
Question: Marcel Tyberg performed this task between 1927 and 1928, although his result was premiered in 2010. When Anton Safronov performed this task, he used a melody the Marche Heroique piano duet. Frank Merrick won the English category of a 1928 contest held by the Columbia Gramophone Company to perform this task, although the rules of that contest were expanded to allow original compositions as well. Mario Venzago and Brian Newbould performed this task based on the hypothesis that the entr'acte from the incidental music to Rosamunde was originally intended to be part of a composition whose third-movement scherzo is mostly scored for piano only. For 10 points, name this task which involves writing the scherzo and finale of a partially completed orchestral work by Franz Schubert.
I heard this in practice once I believe and I loved the idea. My experience might have been colored by the fact that I heard a rare live performance of the lead-in the summer prior.

ACF Nats 2017:
David Wilbern wrote a psychoanalytic essay on Shakespeare's usage of this word 3ttingly entitled "Shakespeare's [this word]." After insisting that Hermione and Polixenes "wish...all eyes blind with the pin and web but theirs," Leontes uses this word eight times in 3ve lines in a frantic speech to Camillo. Gloucester tells Edmund that "the quality of [this word] hath not much need to hide itself" as he demands he hand over the forged letter implicating Edgar in conspiracy. Before the performance of The Murder of Gonzago, Hamlet puns on Ophelia's remark that she "thinks [this word]," calling it "a fair thought to lie between maids' legs." When asked what she can say to top her sisters' praises, Cordelia responds with this word, prompting Lear to say, "[this word] will come of [this word]. Speak again." For 10 points, name this concept that, according to the title of a play featuring Beatrice and Benedick, is the subject of "much ado."
I think others have also commended this question, but it tests an extremely famous thing in Shakespeare [studies] that's underasked in quiz bowl, while drawing on clues from very "easy" source material.

Cambridge Open 2017:
Samuel Butler believed this figure to be a young Sicilian woman, and a ‘Life of’ him was written by an author claiming to be Herodotus. One theory about this figure was influenced by the study of Bosnian guslars by Parry and Lord, and one which divides this figure into two individuals is the origin of the word (*) ‘chorizont’. Neoanalysis of this figure includes the Memnon theory that he adapted the Aithiopis. This writer's use of phrases such as 'rhododactylos eos' suggests he was part of an oral tradition. For 10 points, name the supposed author of the Iliad and Odyssey.
ANSWER: Homer [accept answers along the lines of “the author of the Iliad or Odyssey” before mentioned from people who are needlessly fussy] <RF, European Literature>
I also recall a question from a recent tournament on Paradise Lost using mostly lit crit clues that I enjoyed. I'm trying to locate it but haven't had luck - it drew heavily on "Surprised by Sin" before moving into Blake's "Milton is of the devil's party" quip.
Last edited by csheep on Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:57 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by The Bold Ideas of Bernie Sanders (I-VT) » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:48 pm

One fictional realm is described as being one of these objects “devised by men” and therefore “destined to be deciphered by men.” In one story, an Arab king builds one of these objects with no stairways, galleries, or walls after capturing a Babylonian king and stranding him in the desert. The narrator describes his lonely life inside one of these locations with many pools and courtyards, though it lacks locked doors, in the story “The House of (*) Asterion.” In a different story, Stephen Albert describes how one of these objects supposedly built by Ts’ui Pen is actually contained inside the book that he wrote for future generations, as alluded to by the title of “The Garden of Forking Paths.” For 10 points, name these objects, a prevalent theme in the stories of Jorge Luis Borges, one of which was built to contain the Minotaur.

ANSWER: labyrinths [accept mazes; accept Tlon during the first sentence]
Kurtis wrote this delightful TU from 2012's QUARK.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by RexSueciae » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:55 pm

Works of architecture located in this country include a pair of belfries known colloquially as the "Towers of the Teeth", which are connected by a structure called the Morannon. This country's agricultural center is the southern region of Nurn, and most transit across this country's borders is conducted via Cirith Gorgor and Cirith Ungol. This country borders Rhun to the north and Khand and Harad to the south, and its most notable landmarks include the tower of Barad-Dur and Orodruin, also known as Mount Doom. For 10 points, name this "Land of Shadow" ruled by Sauron in The Lord of the Rings.
ANSWER: Mordor
From 2010 GSAC, the first tournament that I ever staffed as a wee lad. I have a feeling that academic-sounding answerlines on fictional subjects have gotten more common over the years, although it may just be the nostalgia talking. That was a fun tossup to hear.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Guile Island » Tue Mar 06, 2018 10:02 pm

My favorite tossup I've ever played, thanks to Mike Bentley's A Culture of Improvement tournament. Mike's 2 tech tournaments both have so many hilarious questions much like this one.
20. This man operated Mississippi's first luxury motel, where guests could pay to have a crow named Jim Crow pick the coin from their cuff. On May 7th, 1931 this man was driving a car from Hell's Half-Acre which got into a gunfight with Matt Stewart, who was painting over a rival's service-station ad. While this man was on an unsuccessful trip to Australia to cure his swearing habit, Pete Harman reverse-engineered his best-known product. This man got screwed when his business was bought by Smirnoff distributors Heublein Inc. After handshake deals, (*) restaurant owners would receive packets of a key component of his product. This man supposedly cursed the Hanshin Tigers and was a mentor of a young Dave Thomas. In recognition of this man's charity work in Corbin, Governor Ruby Laffoon awarded this man an honorific title. Recently, this man has been played by Norm McDonald and Jim Gaffigan. For 10 points, name this founder and mascot of KFC.
ANSWER: Colonel Sanders [or Harland David Sanders; prompt on The Colonel] <1>
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by ErikC » Wed Mar 07, 2018 3:36 pm

A speech given about this personal attribute cites how “Fuentes and McCafferty” died side by side with “Bowie and Crockett” at the Alamo. This individual attribute led its holder to condemn the statements of James P. Davis and James McManus against Luis Munoz Marin. Inveighing against this personal attribute diminished the public standing of the author of The Power of Positive Thinking, Norman Vincent Peale. In 2012, Rick Santorum claimed he wanted to “throw up” after reading a speech about this quality that affirmed Article VI of the Constitution to an audience in Houston. Although this quality’s holder hoped that it was “buried” after defeating Hubert Humphrey in the West Virginia primary, this attribute may have lost its holder four states, including Ohio and Florida, to Richard
Nixon. For 10 points, name this unique religious denomination held by the 35th President.
ANSWER: theCatholicism of John Fitzgerald Kennedy [prompt on John F. Kennedy’s religion; prompt on Catholicism]
I have a hard time pick a real favourite question, but this is a good candidate. lt's a really creative answerline that is still quite distinctive and notable. It also connects a social issue like anti-Catholic sentiment to a very famous historical figure and rewards those with knowledge outside of the main answerline - if you are thinking the correct answer at the start of the question, the Rick Santorum clue helps because he is also notably Catholic. It's also has that "A-ha" moment that a creative answerline gives.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Wed Mar 07, 2018 3:40 pm

ACF Nationals 2008 wrote:This functional group is the result of the Woodward Modification, which features substitution by a benzoate anion followed by hydrolysis. That reaction modifies the Prévost Reaction, which also produces these compounds from alkenes by way of adding iodine. The Upjohn method for producing them is similar to the Sharpless asymmetric method – both of these reactions usually use osmium tetroxide as a catalyst. In both of the above methods, these molecules are being formed from alkenes by way of dihydroxylation. Chloral hydrate is an example of one of these, the geminal type, which tend to quickly lose water and become carbonyl compounds, while the vicinal or 1,2-type of these includes pinacol. FTP, name these chemical compounds also known as glycols, so named because they contain two hydroxyl groups.
ANSWER: diols (or accept glycol before mentioned)
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Wed Mar 07, 2018 3:40 pm

I don't remember what tournament or what year this was from, but the answer line was "Bar Mitzvah" and the clues were all about modern Bar Mitzvahs, as traditionally conducted in the 21st century. I think there was even a clue about how decorations often reflect the kid's favorite sports team. I believe it was in the religion distribution of whatever tournament this was.

I thought it was particularly inventive and bold. I was very jealous that I had not thought of such a thing first.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Milhouse » Wed Mar 07, 2018 5:30 pm

Sima Guang Hater wrote:
ACF Nationals 2008 wrote:This functional group is the result of the Woodward Modification, which features substitution by a benzoate anion followed by hydrolysis. That reaction modifies the Prévost Reaction, which also produces these compounds from alkenes by way of adding iodine. The Upjohn method for producing them is similar to the Sharpless asymmetric method – both of these reactions usually use osmium tetroxide as a catalyst. In both of the above methods, these molecules are being formed from alkenes by way of dihydroxylation. Chloral hydrate is an example of one of these, the geminal type, which tend to quickly lose water and become carbonyl compounds, while the vicinal or 1,2-type of these includes pinacol. FTP, name these chemical compounds also known as glycols, so named because they contain two hydroxyl groups.
ANSWER: diols (or accept glycol before mentioned)
Can I ask why you like this? To my novice eye brought up in an age with different standards, the first half of this seems kind of heavy on Eponymous Reactions, the syntax seems kind of strange to me ("by way of adding iodine"; "an example of one of these, the geminal type"), and OsO4 intuitively seems a bit easy for the midpoint of an ACF Nationals tossup since I think that reagent is commonly covered in introductory orgo classes.
EDIT: And, of course, no tossup on a functional group which is a combination of two or more different basic functional groups can turn out well--unless your point is that this is an exception? If so, why is that?

So as to contribute to this thread in a positive way, I have to say my favorite questions, or at least the ones I remember the most, are the kind of "limited-scope common links" that are effectively ways of writing a new answerline for an easier work of literature. The above examples of Gatsby's House and "nothing" are probably better written, but my first exposure to these that I remember, which I still have fondness for, are from PACE NSC 2016
Question: This sort of object provides the surname of an innkeeper who owns a mysterious smoked-over oil painting and tells the protagonist that another character is out peddling shrunken heads. In the first chapter of the novel in which he appears, that protagonist describes finding himself stopping before warehouses full of these objects.A character climbs into one of these objects with an idol named Yojo after falling (*)) ill with a fever and later decorates it with carvings. A canoe-like object of this sort is reworked by a carpenter into a life-buoy. One of these objects made by Queequeg emerges from a whirlpool after the Pequod sinks. For 10 points, Moby Dick ends with Ishmael floating on what sort of object, usually used to store dead bodies?
ANSWER: coffins [prompt on canoes, buoys, or sea chests]

In preparation for these events, five crates of oranges and lemons arrive at their location every Friday. After leaving one of these events, two men crash into a ditch when the wheel of their car comes off. During one of these events, a character exclaims"this fella's a regular Belasco!" while examining books in a library; that character is nicknamed for his (*)) owl-eyed spectacles. A cheating golf champion named Jordan Baker is told "amazing things" at one of these events. Music like "Jazz History of the World" plays at these events, which occur in a mansion that lies across the bay from a green dock light in West Egg. For 10 points, name these events attended by Nick Carraway and hosted by the title character of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby.
ANSWER: Jay Gatsby's parties [or party scenes from The Great Gatsby]

A troglodyte destined to live this many years is nicknamed "Argos" by a Roman soldier who encounters him outside of an abandoned city. A Scottish Bible seller gives a short story's narrator a book with this many pages, which he later hides in the National Library. Although the inquisitors search for "Vindications," the Purifiers destroy items from a collection of this many items, which includes The (*)) Combed Thunderclap and The Plastic Cramp. This many scenes are visible from a point in Carlos Daneri's cellar called "The Aleph." The Library of Babel contains this many hexagonal rooms, and this many possible outcomes appear in Ts'ui Pen's "The Garden of Forking Paths." For 10 points, many Jorge Luis Borges stories feature what concept of indefinite largeness?
ANSWER: infinity [or infinitely many; accept obvious equivalents such as unending, numberless, or forever]
(That said, I got good buzzes on all of these, so it's plausible that my affinity for the genre is biased.)
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by MorganV » Wed Mar 07, 2018 6:26 pm

Definitely the 2013 NASAT tossup on parties in Pride and Prejudice which led to me buzzing in and excitedly saying "Like... Darcy's balls?!"
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by rylltraka » Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:23 pm

Obviously, I wasn't actually playing this question at the tournament, but to me the ur-example of one of these types of questions was the Chicago Open 2010 TU on "The final chapter of Ulysses", which struck me at the time as something entirely novel, but also cleverly constructed and well-designed to reward people who've read the novel. It's almost certainly true that similar answerlines had been written before, but I wasn't aware of them.
Result: 36 | Chicago Open | 2010 | Round: 2010 - Chicago Open - Round 10 - A Blue Sky Out of the Oresteia.doc | Question: 2 | Literature | ID: 8743

Question: It begins with references to "that old faggot Mrs. Riordan" and muses on the death of Lt. Gardner in the Boer War and the connection between a painting of a nymph and metempsychosis. It relates how Miss Stack brought "the worst" flowers at "the bottom of the barrel," providing a contrast for the later recollections of the roses in the hair of the Andalusian girls, a reference to its speaker's youth in Gibraltar as the daughter of Major Tweedy and Lunita Laredo. It begins and ends with a word it's author called "acquiescence and end of all resistance," and closes by describing how its speaker used the feel of her breasts and the smell of her perfume to get a lover's heart "going like mad." Ending with "yes I said yes I will say Yes," this passage relates its speaker's dissatisfaction with her husband's sex drive and her affair with Blazes Boylan, and constitutes the final section of a work which casts Stephen Daedelus as Telemachus. FTP, identify this final portion of Ulysses, a stream of consciousness monologue delivered by the wife of Leopold Bloom.

ANSWER: Molly Bloom's Soliloquy [accept any equivalents like Speech or Monologue that establish that Molly Bloom is talking; accept "the Last Chapter of Ulysses before mentioned; prompt on just "Ulysses" before mentioned]
I'd also like to point out ironically that many of the tossups we've been mentioning would, if collated together into a single packet, make for a rather stilted playing experience, if only because these mold-breaking off-kilter tossups stand out in the memory for being odd, and a packet full of them would be a poor test of encyclopedic QB knowledge. On the other foot, we can probably predict safely that no one's favorite tossup is going to be on a rote topic like the Treaty of Karlowitz.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by UlyssesInvictus » Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:28 pm

Interestingly, here's another one on the soliloquy in Listory:

2016 Listory Round 7

Question: A character in this passage wishes to have a conversation with an educated person, but laments that she would need fez slippers and either a new morning gown or her old dressing jacket. A portion of this passage condemns the hypocrisy of atheists who ask for priests on their deathbed. This passage asks who the first person in the universe was, noting that neither they nor the (*)) speaker are aware of the identity. Because it was a leap year then and now, its speaker identifies sixteen years as the time between the present and the first time that she had sex with a man in Gibraltar. It closes the section "Penelope" and ends "yes I will yes I will Yes," a description of its speaker's climax. For 10 points, name this rambling monologue from Ulysses delivered by Leopold Bloom's wife.
ANSWER: Molly Bloom's Soliloquy [or equivalents for "Soliloquy"; prompt on "Penelope" or Ulysses before mentioned]

I like this one a little better, but who's to know if it was inspired by or independently of the CO one.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by UlyssesInvictus » Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:32 pm

While I'm at it:

2013 NASAT
Round 3 #1
Question: One of these events is the site of the first appearance of Mr. Hurst, his wife, and his sister-in-law, Caroline, the latter of whom disparages the possibility of one of these events occurring at Netherfield as a punishment, not a pleasure. A mischievous soldier does not attend one of them to avoid Georgiana's brother. During one of these events in Meryton, Jane is referred to as "the most beautiful creature" in the room by Mr. Bingley, while Jane's sister is derided as "tolerable, but not handsome enough to tempt me" by Mr. Darcy. For 10 points, name this type of social dance event common in the novels of Jane Austen.
ANSWER: balls in Pride and Prejudice [or dances before it is read; prompt on party or obvious equivalents]
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by ErikC » Wed Mar 07, 2018 8:15 pm

I'd also like to point out ironically that many of the tossups we've been mentioning would, if collated together into a single packet, make for a rather stilted playing experience, if only because these mold-breaking off-kilter tossups stand out in the memory for being odd, and a packet full of them would be a poor test of encyclopedic QB knowledge. On the other foot, we can probably predict safely that no one's favorite tossup is going to be on a rote topic like the Treaty of Karlowitz.
Maybe stilted but sounds like a blast.

Some of my favourite tossups, like the one below, are pretty simple questions with great clues. Is Mr. Anshi's example of a favourite question the science version of the Treaty of Karlowitz? I can't tell at all.
A primary candidate in this election travelled on a bus that the press labelled the “Straight Talk Express.” That candidate accused the eventual winner of this election of courting “agents of intolerance” after a speech at Bob Jones University. An international custody case involving the return of a boy to his father in Havana may have affected the outcome of this election in a place where the use of (*) “butterfly ballots” helped Pat Buchanan overperform. This election’s losing candidate was ridiculed for saying “I took initiative in creating the Internet” and disputed the outcome in Volusia and Palm Beach counties. For 10 points, Joe Lieberman was a VP candidate in what election year, in which George W. Bush defeated Al Gore after a lengthy recount in Florida?
ANSWER: US Presidential Election of 2000
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by rylltraka » Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:27 pm

UlyssesInvictus wrote: A second tossup on the final chapter of Ulysses.
Your mileage may vary, but I prefer Tossup #1 because 1) I heard it first and 2) having read the book in question, I would be able to answer the first one fairly early on, but the second one only near the end because of the minuscule details it requires remembering. But the detail bit is a question for a whole 'nother time.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Silverman » Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:12 am

RexSueciae wrote:
Works of architecture located in this country include a pair of belfries known colloquially as the "Towers of the Teeth", which are connected by a structure called the Morannon. This country's agricultural center is the southern region of Nurn, and most transit across this country's borders is conducted via Cirith Gorgor and Cirith Ungol. This country borders Rhun to the north and Khand and Harad to the south, and its most notable landmarks include the tower of Barad-Dur and Orodruin, also known as Mount Doom. For 10 points, name this "Land of Shadow" ruled by Sauron in The Lord of the Rings.
ANSWER: Mordor
From 2010 GSAC, the first tournament that I ever staffed as a wee lad. I have a feeling that academic-sounding answerlines on fictional subjects have gotten more common over the years, although it may just be the nostalgia talking. That was a fun tossup to hear.
In a similar vein,
ACF Regionals 2016 wrote: The victorious force at this battle landed most of their ground troops at Moorsh Moraine. Wes Janson was one of
few participants during this battle to successfully execute an aerial maneuver that Dak Ralter died attempting. Only
three of the losing side’s ships managed to escape this battle. Shortly before it, a soldier from the losing side was
attacked and nearly killed by a large carnivore before he could discover the other side’s scouting unit. General
Maximillian Veers commanded the heavy artillery to “target…maximum firepower” on an important generator
during this battle, taking down the deflector shields around Echo Base. During it, tow cables were used by speeder
pilots to bring down AT-AT walkers. For 10 points, identify this battle on a snowy planet at the beginning of The
Empire Strikes Back.
ANSWER: Battle of Hoth
There's also the common link bonus from SCT 2015 on "1988 movies in which a character is run over by a steamroller."
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by CPiGuy » Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:18 am

If bonuses are allowed, I'm going to have to go with this one Ophir wrote for last year's NASAT.

Franz Bopp reconstructed a model of this paradigm by observing Sanskrit, Persian, Greek, Latin, and Germanic suffixes. For 10 points each:
[10] Name this morphological process, the inflection or variation of verbs to indicate features like tense, number, or person. Latin has four of these paradigms; "amō, amās, amat" is from the first one.
ANSWER: conjugation
[10] "Heidi" and "herself" must be co-indexed in "Heidi bopped herself on the head with a zucchini," a common example sentence illustrating this syntactic feature whose domain constrains the use of pronouns and anaphors. In the 1980s, Noam Chomsky devised its Principles A B and C as part of a theory of government and this feature.
ANSWER: binding [or government and binding; accept word forms like bound]
[10] Both stop consonants in the English word "bop" share all distinctive features except for voicing. That means they have this place of articulation, and thus are produced using the same two parts of the mouth as the sound m.
ANSWER: bilabial [prompt on labial; do not accept "labiodental"]
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by adamsil » Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:21 am

magin wrote:I think it would be interesting for writers to get a sense of the questions that quizbowl players enjoyed the most and why. So, what is your favorite question that you didn't write? I'm hoping that people don't just respond with questions that they got good buzzes on, but ones that were executed so well that they made the whole day brighter.

Personally, my favorite question was this submission from Georgia Tech for ACF Nationals 2013:

[things that Magin heavily edited from my original submission]

Why it made my day: I like that this question included some clues at the beginning to reward people with field knowledge, then moved on to clues accessible to laymen. It also features plenty of Lewis Mumford-style middle clues about the history of technology and tools, which I think quizbowl often elides in favor of questions about abstract ideas. It's also not fraudable from playing past packets, while being incredibly accessible by the end. It rewards many different types of knowledge--you could answer this from learning about anthropology, archaeology, the history of technology, the history of early civilizations, etc, instead of requiring knowledge of one incredibly focused topic.

Not only that, it's written in clear, readable English without meandering clauses. The sentences have a natural rhythm, and while not being too abrupt, stop at the end of every major idea instead of continuing and straining the breath of moderators.

Social science, especially anthropology, can be very difficult to write; for some packet-submission tournaments I edited, no teams submitted any anthropology or archaeology questions. Not only was this a usable question, saving me the time of writing a replacement tossup, but it was on a really interesting and accessible topic. It absolutely saved me a ton of labor and energy, and put a smile on my face and a song in my heart.

To this day, it's my favorite question.
This made my day to read, thanks Jonathan! Amusingly, I looked back at this packet, and I had made the following exact comment (to Will Butler) in the Google Doc after writing it last, with zero knowledge of what I was doing:
"well, at least the SS is done. now I'll never have to that again, and competent people can replace this with an actual legitimate tossup, haha."

In terms of my favorite questions, I always oppose overly imaginative answerlines for the sake of having overly imaginative answerlines, and the most impressive feats to me are when a hard tournament approaches a well-worn topic with new, exciting clues. Billy's T cell tossup at the last CO did this for me. I've always been a proponent of putting more recent biotechnology trends into bio distributions, and this is exactly the way to do it--mixing incredibly important contemporary science about CAR-T cells and cancer immunotherapy into an absolutely gettable answer-line. This was a tossup that I wish I had written. (Even if people apparently didn't convert it on the giveaway? It's probably substantially easier now after Novartis' Kymriah approval, idk)
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by jonah » Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:08 am

Silverman wrote:There's also the common link bonus from SCT 2015 on "1988 movies in which a character is run over by a steamroller."
For 10 points each—name these films from 1988 where a character gets run over by a steamroller:

A. Christopher Lloyd's Judge Doom is revealed to be a toon when he is crushed by a steamroller in this comedy-mystery where real and animated characters interact.

answer: Who Framed Roger Rabbit

B. Ricardo Montalban's character is crushed by a steamroller, a bus, and the USC Marching Band after being stunned by Frank Drebin in this film adapted from TV's Police Squad!.

answer: The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!

C. In this British comedy, Michael Palin, as Ken, runs over Kevin Kline's Otto with a steamroller; that is done in revenge for Otto eating Ken's underwater pet, the title character.

answer: A Fish Called Wanda
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Nabonidus » Thu Mar 08, 2018 4:27 pm

For McGill's year-end awards ceremony these were the three nominees for Best Individual Question Written:

Image

Image

Image
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Thu Mar 08, 2018 7:03 pm

CO 2013 wrote:5. In one game released for this system, the bandit Kurai tries to escape prison to reunite with Akara. Besides that game, Dying Eyes, other RPGs for this system include Reign of Legends and Desolate. One game that achieved its greatest popularity on this system displays messages such as "PIGS MADE A BIG COKE BUST! PRICES ARE OUTRAGEOUS!!!!" That game was a port from MS-DOS which caught on in a version for this system and is called Drug Wars. This was also the first system where one could play a 2D sidescrolling game where the title character picks up squares by walking sideways into them in order to clear a path to the door, called (*) Block Dude. In December 2012, an unauthorized version of Portal was released for this system, which can be natively programmed in a BASIC-like language but requires the use of assembly language for large games, and cannot put more than sixteen kilobytes of code into memory at once. For 10 points, name this gaming platform popular with high school students, whose most popular programs are not games at all but rather scripts for calculating the roots of functions.

ANSWER: the TI-83 [or Parcus; or TI-83 plus; or TI-84; or TI-84 silver edition (they all run the same OS/games); TI-82 or TI-81 are probably correct since they run most of the same programs as well, though no one is going to say those; prompt on graphing calculator]
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Muriel Axon » Thu Mar 08, 2018 7:05 pm

Adam's pottery wheel question is superb!

It's curious to me how many of these responses seem like nothing special today. The "diols" question, the tossup on "finishing the Unfinished Symphony," the various Gatsby things -- these questions are all good,* but I never really gave (or would give) them a second thought. Is this a situation where, like Seinfeld, these ideas were really bold and new, and feel less so now that they've been copied to death? Or is this just a difference in opinion?

Since this is about one's favorite question, and not necessarily the very most innovative and well-constructed question, I would say that I've always enjoyed hearing questions about aspects of ecology that I thought would never come up. The VCU Open 2015 question on "metapopulations" was a good example:
The minimum viable size of these things can be defined by the inequality P-hat root H is greater than or equal to three. The incidence function model of these things was developed by Ilkka Hanski. Their dynamics can be modeled with sources of positive growth rate and sinks of negative growth rate, reflecting suitability. Their persistence is affected by connectivity between (*) patches, which is a major focus of conservation biology in the form of corridors. Hanski incorporated the "rescue effect" into Richard Levins model of these things, in which they are conceived as a simple stochastic balance between local extinction and colonization of suitable habitat patches. For 10 points, identify this term applied to spatially isolated assemblages of organisms that are linked by migration and extinction.
ANSWER: _metapopulations_ [prompt on: "populations", "metacommunities"]
I could also pick about a dozen questions by people like Will, Ike, Jacob, or Jordan. There are so many good questions being written today -- we're really spoiled for choice.

*actually, I always thought the Unfinished Symphony one was a bit corny
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Cheynem » Thu Mar 08, 2018 7:13 pm

Yes, I do think that the first time you are exposed to such questions, the more of an impact they make on you.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Nice hockey Cote d'Azur » Thu Mar 08, 2018 7:47 pm

I don't know much about the topic of this question, but it has one of the best leadins I've heard.
Scattergories wrote:This poet’s complaint about Ben Jonson’s phrase “the bodies that those souls were frighted from” is probably the source of the prescription against using prepositions to end sentences with. Matthew Prior and Charles Montagu parodied one of this author’s poems using the story of the country mouse and the city mouse. That poem, which coined the term “blaze of glory,” begins by describing an animal “immortal and (*) unchang’d.” This poet was targeted in the satire The Medal of John Bayes by a Protestant poet who he described as “the last great prophet
of tautology.” A poem by this author notes “when fate summons, monarchs must obey” after starting “all human things are subject to decay,” and satirizes Thomas Shadwell. For 10 points, name this poet of The Hind and the Panther and Mac Flecknoe.
ANSWER: John Dryden
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Thu Mar 08, 2018 8:37 pm

Tornrak wrote:Can I ask why you like this? To my novice eye brought up in an age with different standards, the first half of this seems kind of heavy on Eponymous Reactions, the syntax seems kind of strange to me ("by way of adding iodine"; "an example of one of these, the geminal type"), and OsO4 intuitively seems a bit easy for the midpoint of an ACF Nationals tossup since I think that reagent is commonly covered in introductory orgo classes.
EDIT: And, of course, no tossup on a functional group which is a combination of two or more different basic functional groups can turn out well--unless your point is that this is an exception? If so, why is that?
It was a different time; at the time it was a very creative idea for a functional group question and questions were overall easier. Also I got it against Chicago A in an ACF Nationals final, which means a lot considering both Susan and Selene were on the team at the time.

Also consider the word "different" in the law you cited - this is two of the same functional group. Plus diols are synthetically distinct enough and important enough (see the Sharpless reaction) that I think it works well.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by LeoLaw » Mon Mar 19, 2018 5:26 pm

I don't have access to the tossup but someone wrote a tossup on "action" from physics at D2 ICT last year, I was very delighted.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Important Bird Area » Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:18 pm

2017 DII ICT round 1 wrote:This quantity equals the line integral of momentum, and its "abbreviated" form is considered minimal in Maupertuis's principle. Planck's constant is a quantum of this quantity. The time integral of the (*) Lagrangian equals this quantity which, for a physically realized path, assumes an extreme or stationary value. For 10 points—name this subject of a physical "principle" asserting systems will display its "least" value.

answer: action (accept classical action; principle of least action)
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by everdiso » Mon Apr 02, 2018 5:36 pm

I'm not sure if this year's MUT set is clear yet, so I won't post the question. But tossup 2 from pack 14 (Finals 1) was really terrific. I didn't know most of the clues and only got it for 10, but looking over them afterwards, they were really interesting and significant things about a fascinating and important topic.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Your Genie Felon, Me » Thu Apr 05, 2018 3:51 am

everdiso wrote:I'm not sure if this year's MUT set is clear yet, so I won't post the question. But tossup 2 from pack 14 (Finals 1) was really terrific. I didn't know most of the clues and only got it for 10, but looking over them afterwards, they were really interesting and significant things about a fascinating and important topic.
Apparently, this was an SMT tossup by Jordan Brownstein.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Thu Apr 05, 2018 9:08 am

Honorable mention to "science tossups written by the 2006 University of Michigan team"

Michigan was good that year: they played in the finals at ACF Nationals, losing to Texas A&M by not that much. But their lineup of Ryan Westbrook, Matt Lafer, Will Turner, and David Rappaport lacked a true science player, even though Will Turner would eventually go on to get a PhD in Physics and Matt Lafer is an engineer.

This was back in the day when most tournaments were packet submission, and Michigan's submitted packets always featured well written but still slightly off the wall science tossups. My two favorite ones were tossups on "peristalsis" and "cryovolcanoes" - neither of which were common tossup answers at that time. It was like, what would happen if a bunch of really smart people who had a good grasp of how to write a good question but lacked exposure to the traditional science canon decided to derive a science canon from first principles. My fondness is probably helped by the fact that I beat actual science players to both of those tossups.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by marnold » Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:19 pm

I don't know how to find the set, but I believe the first tossup of the tournament for CO Trash in 2008 (?) had the answer line "jars of urine." It's a great question in its own right, but if I'm correct in thinking it was the first question of the first packet, I think it gets a boost for being the perfect "tone-setter" for the tournament (and Andrew's CO Trash oeuvre generally).
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Cheynem » Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:25 pm

Hopefully this is free to reprint:
1. In Pete Dexter’s novel Paris Trout, these are discovered in Paris’s safes after his suicide. In John Barth’s novel The Floating Opera, the disposition of 72 of these
allows Todd Andrews to win a suit about a contested will. In the course of doing publicity for Synecdoche, New York, Charlie Kaufman made it known that he did
not collect these. Mojo Nixon wrote a song expressing his refusal to create one of these, which noted that Foghorn Leghorn and Huey Long would also refuse to
create them. One of these was depicted in a photograph by Andres Serrano which also featured a crucifix. In The Aviator, Leonardo DiCaprio’s character is seen holed up in a room with them. FTP, identify these containers filled with a distasteful liquid.
ANSWER: jars of urine (accept equivalents)
(I found the set by going to quizbowlpackets.com and looking up 2008 CO Trash, Mr. Lawyer Man)
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by marnold » Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:37 pm

Damn kids with your fancy websites! Why, in my day, if it wasn't on the Stanford Packet Archive or Chicago's secret vault of packets, it didn't exist: I checked the Stanford archive and the only version of CO Trash I saw on there had the first toss-up with the answer line "Lee Henry" (lol) and so I gave up.

Also, apparently I made the first toss-up of my CO Trash the following, as a loving tribute to the "jars of urine" question.
1. The only IMDB credit for Anne Sellors is a TV role in 1984’s Threads as a character named “Woman who” does this action. In Jim Lehrer’s 2004 novel Flying Crows, multiple chapters concern asylum-patient Josh’s thoughts that he’ll be shot for doing this, particularly on horseback. Krug orders Phyllis to do this or they’ll cut Mari, prompting the response of “you sick mother!” in a scene from the original Last House on the Left. Before a pitch to Samsonite, it happens to Freddy Rumsen, leading to his firing. This notoriously happened during the song “Hey Mama” at a 2005 concert in San Diego, though Fergie apparently did it again in 2008, but doused herself in champagne to hide it. FTP, identify this unfortunate action that might arise from over-hydration.
ANSWER: urinating on oneself (accept pretty much anything that gets the basic idea: pissing oneself, losing control of one’s bladder, etc.)
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by not quite » Sat Apr 28, 2018 12:49 pm

2012 The Questions Concerning Technology, round 1 question 11 wrote:William Franklin is a leading proponent of using the non-lethal guard variety of these super-machines as “a part of integrated sheep protection.” Unfortunately, one prototype of this product, Hemiauchenia, didn't do so great in the North American market. As of 2011, the most advanced single domain botulinum A neurotoxin detectors are derived from one component of these apparatuses since that component of these units is missing the light chain. One special edition of this product is the (*) Ccara and sample size units are called crias. One of these was used for branding by a company started by Justin Frankel. That startup was bought by AOL, was called Nullsoft, and made Winamp. One common complaint about these is their defect where they forcibly eject water onto the user's face. Uses of these assemblages include transportation and fiber production. They are sometimes confused with related developments, such as the vicuña and the alpaca. For 10 points, name this cute critical component of the Incan civilization.

ANSWER: llamas
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Muriel Axon » Sat Apr 28, 2018 1:26 pm

not quite wrote:
2012 The Questions Concerning Technology, round 1 question 11 wrote:William Franklin is a leading proponent of using the non-lethal guard variety of these super-machines as “a part of integrated sheep protection.” Unfortunately, one prototype of this product, Hemiauchenia, didn't do so great in the North American market. As of 2011, the most advanced single domain botulinum A neurotoxin detectors are derived from one component of these apparatuses since that component of these units is missing the light chain. One special edition of this product is the (*) Ccara and sample size units are called crias. One of these was used for branding by a company started by Justin Frankel. That startup was bought by AOL, was called Nullsoft, and made Winamp. One common complaint about these is their defect where they forcibly eject water onto the user's face. Uses of these assemblages include transportation and fiber production. They are sometimes confused with related developments, such as the vicuña and the alpaca. For 10 points, name this cute critical component of the Incan civilization.

ANSWER: llamas
For the first year after we read this question at MSU practice, I thought about it at least once a month.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Kasper Kaijanen » Sun Apr 29, 2018 1:45 pm

2018 ACF Nats Editors 7 Bonus 1 wrote:1. A “study” of this kind of science fiction is presented in Gary Westfahl’s book Cosmic Engineers, which examines Hal
Clement’s story “Mission of Gravity.” For 10 points each:
[10] Give this adjective that describes science-fiction stories that seemingly focus on scientific accuracy rather than character
or setting.
ANSWER: hard [accept hard science fiction or hard SF]
[10] Many of this author’s hard science-fiction stories were first published by Ben Bova in Analog. He wrote about Valentine
Michael Smith, a man who is raised by Martians, in his novel Stranger in a Strange Land.
ANSWER: Robert Heinlein [or Robert Anson Heinlein]
[10] Hard sci-fi author and astronomer Alastair Reynolds participated in the John Harrison–led internet discussion that
coined the name for this movement associated with China Miéville’s work. Jeff and Ann VanderMeer edited an anthology
titled for this literary movement, which blends aspects of fantasy, sci-fi, and horror.
ANSWER: new weird [accept The New Weird]
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by Ike » Mon Apr 30, 2018 5:37 pm

Kasper Kaijanen wrote:
2018 ACF Nats Editors 7 Bonus 1 wrote:1. A “study” of this kind of science fiction is presented in Gary Westfahl’s book Cosmic Engineers, which examines Hal
Clement’s story “Mission of Gravity.” For 10 points each:
[10] Give this adjective that describes science-fiction stories that seemingly focus on scientific accuracy rather than character
or setting.
ANSWER: hard [accept hard science fiction or hard SF]
[10] Many of this author’s hard science-fiction stories were first published by Ben Bova in Analog. He wrote about Valentine
Michael Smith, a man who is raised by Martians, in his novel Stranger in a Strange Land.
ANSWER: Robert Heinlein [or Robert Anson Heinlein]
[10] Hard sci-fi author and astronomer Alastair Reynolds participated in the John Harrison–led internet discussion that
coined the name for this movement associated with China Miéville’s work. Jeff and Ann VanderMeer edited an anthology
titled for this literary movement, which blends aspects of fantasy, sci-fi, and horror.
ANSWER: new weird [accept The New Weird]
Aww, thanks! Like Adam up thread, this made my day! (And thanks also goes to the editor who whacked the bonus into playability!)

I guess I'll post my favorite question and some reasons why (Thanks to NAQT for letting me post this):
ICT 2013 wrote:Christopher Ricks links this quality to a healthy "sense of identity" in a work on this concept's formulator "and Embarrassment." In its first appearance this quality is ascribed to the "Man of Achievement in Literature," but is said to be lacking in Coleridge, who could not remain "content with half knowledge," instead engaging in an "irritable reaching after (*) fact and reason." For 10 points—name this quality of being comfortable with uncertainty, championed in a letter written by Keats.

answer: negative capability
I personally love the way this question captures the language and style of Keats in the text, all the while providing useful clues – even if you aren’t familiar with the “irritable reaching” language, the text sounds incredibly Keatsian, and it's a delight to hear it in game. That language also allows for “non-unique” clues in this tossup to be made buzzable. That is, the clue “Name this quality of being comfortable with uncertainty” is certainly not buzzable in of itself, but if you plug in the Keatsian sounding language from before, you can buzz on it. This same kind of "background clue" effect also applies to the first part of the tossup as well – if you recognize Ricks as a Keatsian, you can eventually make the jump to negative capability before other players that just are familiar with Keats’s discussion of negative capability*.

To pick apart the giveaway even more: if you can’t recognize Keats' style, but know of negative capability and the fact it was discussed in a letter, you can buzz on the word “letter”, but before Keats, versus someone who just has binary-associated negative capability. So the phrase "in a letter by John Keats" is better than "in one of John Keats's letters" for gameplay. Also the giveaway contains a succinct and intelligible description of negative capability to people unfamiliar with the topic, thereby possibly igniting interest. This may seem not very special, but if you look at some previous giveaways for tossups on negative capability:
Other Tournaments wrote: For 10 points, name this theoretical state defined in a letter to the brothers of its formulator, the poet of Ode to a Nightingale, John Keats.
FTP what is this two-word phrase representing the ability of a writer to efface his own consciousness coined by John Keats?
you'll see they've either sidestepped trying to define it, or they use language that isn't really intelligible to people who aren't familiar with Keats i. e. "what does it mean to efface your own consciousness?" The giveaway as written clearly explains the concept while providing a buzzable clue. (As an aside and an illustration of how difficult it is to do "background-clues" correctly, you can see that the first giveaway tries to do the "background-clue" thing in a clunky manner; the fact that Keats wrote ~Ode to a Nightingale~ really doesn't help the player get to negative capability, and is just verbiage.)

I guess I'll close by stating that when it comes to favorite questions and enjoyable tournaments, I'm more interested in the ideas behind the tossup often rather than the tossup itself. I imagine that these days, there are maybe 0 or 1 people in the ICT field who are familiar with Ricks -- so the leadin probably isn't all that helpful. (Maybe it would have been better at CO.) So the tossup probably isn't the Platonic ideal of negative capability tossups, but the ideas behind its leadin, middle clues, giveaway, and usage of "background clues" just goes to show how much thought is put into every part of a tossup.
Ike
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by jinah » Tue May 08, 2018 10:11 pm

I absolutely loved this tossup from ACF Nationals, which I've since learned was by Andrew Hart:
This conceptual framework is criticized because “no baby has ever vomited” on it, and because it “doesn’t have leaking breasts or hormones,” in a 2016 book by Katrine Marçal. A 2001 paper by Joseph Henrich et al. titled “in search of” this conceptual framework uses the term “canonical model” to describe it. After sending twelve researchers to various types of cultures in twelve countries to administer ultimatum and dictator games, that paper concluded that this conceptual framework could not be found to exist anywhere in the world. A 2000 paper by Richard Thaler predicted the “evolution” of this conceptual framework to become more heterogeneous, incorporate cognition, learn more slowly, and have a lower IQ. Feminist and behavioral economics have criticized, for 10 points, what conceptual framework of human behavior underlying neoclassical economics that Thaler predicted would “evolve” into Homo sapiens?
ANSWER: Homo economicus [or economic man]
I thought it was a well done "creative" answerline that asked about an important issue, and it was fun to have a behavioral economics tossup that for once wasn't on Kahneman and Tversky. At least for me, it provided the ideal "creative" answerline experience of "I can't believe this is actually an answerline but it's also definitely the correct answer"
JinAh Kim
University of Pennsylvania, '18

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TylerV
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by TylerV » Tue May 08, 2018 11:56 pm

Alex Fregeau wrote:The Wei Zhi puts this place 12,000 li north of a place called Dog Slave Country. Xu Fu likely visited this place in his search for the elixir of life and may have claimed one of its mountains to be Mt. Penglai. Red paint used to depict tattooing on haniwa statues is evidence for the claim that some of the people of this place were descendants of Wu Taibo of the Spring and Autumn State of Wu. People from this place were the most distant of the Dongyi. An early exonym for this place may have etymological ties to a word for "bent down" or (*)) "dwarf". Chinese sources describe a civil war in this place that ended with the accession of a sorcerer queen who only communicated through her brother. The first recorded name for this place is wa or wo and the state of Yamataikoku here was ruled by Queen Himiko. For 10 points, identify this island nation to the east of China known locally as Nihon or Nippon.
ANSWER: Japan (accept Wa, Wo, Nippon, or Nihon before mentioned and any island in the archipelago)
SCOP 8 wrote: For ten points each, give the following about a seemingly interchangeable group of Hollywood stars, the
Chrises.
In a 2017 appearance on this show, Chris Pine attempted to teach the audience of Studio 8H that he isn’t Chris
Evans, Pratt, or Hemsworth with a song set to “Uptown Girls.” Meanwhile, Kate McKinnon, who debuted on this
show in 2012, explains that the Chrises are “always at the airport wearing raggedy tees that are tight just around the
pecs.”
ANSWER: Saturday Night Live (accept SNL)
In 2009, Chrises Hemsworth and Pine united to play George and James Kirk in a J.J. Abrams reboot of this sci-fi
franchise. This Gene Roddenberry-created franchise returned to television in 2017 with the premiere of Discovery.
ANSWER: Star Trek
This third film in a Marvel superhero franchise will boast the highest concentration of Chrises yet. In this film,
Hemsworth, Pratt, and Evans will reprise their roles as Thor, Starlord, and Captain America to defeat Thanos.
ANSWER: Avengers: Infinity War (prompt on (the) Avengers)
Tyler Vaughan
Gibson-assembling tossups from lists of named things on Wikipedia since 2014.
UW-Platteville, Rock Valley, UIUC 2014-2017
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UlyssesInvictus
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by UlyssesInvictus » Wed May 09, 2018 11:01 am

TylerV wrote:
SCOP 8 wrote: For ten points each, give the following about a seemingly interchangeable group of Hollywood stars, the
Chrises.
In a 2017 appearance on this show, Chris Pine attempted to teach the audience of Studio 8H that he isn’t Chris
Evans, Pratt, or Hemsworth with a song set to “Uptown Girls.” Meanwhile, Kate McKinnon, who debuted on this
show in 2012, explains that the Chrises are “always at the airport wearing raggedy tees that are tight just around the
pecs.”
ANSWER: Saturday Night Live (accept SNL)
In 2009, Chrises Hemsworth and Pine united to play George and James Kirk in a J.J. Abrams reboot of this sci-fi
franchise. This Gene Roddenberry-created franchise returned to television in 2017 with the premiere of Discovery.
ANSWER: Star Trek
This third film in a Marvel superhero franchise will boast the highest concentration of Chrises yet. In this film,
Hemsworth, Pratt, and Evans will reprise their roles as Thor, Starlord, and Captain America to defeat Thanos.
ANSWER: Avengers: Infinity War (prompt on (the) Avengers)
I wrote a tossup for Festivus that was solely on Chris's in the MCU. (I dug around for some extras named Chris, even.) It was poorly received, not least because everyone who buzzed just described more and more about the superheroes when prompted rather than the actors.
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Re: Your Favorite Question

Post by gerbilownage » Thu May 10, 2018 5:04 am

I forgot the tournament it was in, but there was a great McDonald's Pantheon bonus once. I think it went Hamburgular/Grimace/Big Mac or something.
Laurence Li
Westview HS '13
Yale '17

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